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Thursday, November 26, 2020
November 26, 2020 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 6:17 PM :: 4698 Views

The hidden story of the third Thanksgiving: 1623--giving thanks for freedom

UH Discovers Hawaii has Twice as Much Fresh Water as Believed

27 fewer deaths on Hawaii roads compared to 2019

Unemployment Tax Blues

Ethics: HDoT Employee hard at Work--on his own yard

Hawai'i Sea Wall Regulations Unconstitutional

Billy Oku Appointed New Hawaii State Sheriff

How Blangiardi will deal with Federal Investigations

KHON: … KHON2 asked the incoming mayor how he will approach transparency and ethics in the wake of federal investigations probing the county, and where climate and the environment stand on his priority list.

Blangiardi inherits a county apparatus that has been under the microscope quite a bit the past few years, from the Kealoha scandals that rocked the police and prosecutors departments, to the pending federal investigations involving Keith Kaneshiro, former Corporation Counsel Donna Leong, a subject letter to Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s Managing Director Roy Amemiya, and multiple subpoenas at HART.

KHON2 asked: “To the extent that there has been a breakdown in trust, including federal investigations, what can you do differently?”

“I think first and foremost, what’s happened is Steve Alm has now been elected prosecutor, so that’s going to be a big step,” Blangiardi said. “We know what we’ve been through, and looking backward, looking in the rearview mirror is not going to solve where we need to go. I’m looking through the front windshield right now on what’s possible. Those of us now myself included in the role, I’ll be held accountable, need to be at their very best. That’s going to be my expectation of everybody.”

read … How Blangiardi will take on transparency and environment as new mayor

What Megan Kau was doing for Michael Miske

ILind: … Hairs. Vacuum filters. Swabs of several drains. Sponges. Engine filters. Swabs of handles, sleeping areas, deck gaskets, railings, and the forward compartment. Bilge pump with discharge hose. Rope. A knife. Three swabs from the aft mechanical compartment. Two starboard deck drains. A faucet. A hose segment. Bilge pump with discharge hose. Engine covers. Swab of brown substance. A knife. Two SD memory cards. Marine navigation equipment.

These are among more than 100 items containing possible forensic evidence seized during the FBI’s August 10, 2017 search of a boat allegedly used in the kidnapping and murder of 21-year old Jonathan Fraser, who suddenly went missing on July 30, 2016. He has not been seen since, and is presumed dead.

The inventory of items seized can be found here.

The documents, filed in the course of a lawsuit by the boat’s owner (filed by Megan Kau) seeking to block parts of the search and secure the boat’s return, were among previously sealed court records made public for the first time this week. The records were disclosed as the result of a lawsuit filed by the Civil Beat Law Center for the Public Interest….

Aug 20, 2020: Megan Kau Hired by Miske – Will she be 3rd Prosecutor in a row to have a Miske Connection?

ILind: Thoughts on yesterday’s post

read … First look at possible forensic evidence in 2016 disappearance of Jonathan Fraser

Hawaii Releases More Details On COVID-19 Vaccine Plan

CB: … The Department of Health will spearhead the effort to coordinate the distribution of vaccines to 121,000 people who meet eligibility as critical populations within four weeks of the vaccine’s availability, according to a copy of its plan — in its first iteration — which is now available for viewing online.

The Department of Health initially had refused to release a full copy of the draft….

read … Hawaii Releases More Details On COVID-19 Vaccine Plan

Statistics suggest returning residents, not visitors, more likely to bring COVID-19 into Hawaii

HNN: … The number of travel-related coronavirus cases in the islands is going up, but statistics show that it’s returning residents—and not visitors—who have a higher infection rate.

So far this month, Hawaii reported 208 travel-related cases linked to either returning residents or visitors.

That’s higher than any other month. The previous high was in March, which had 222 travel-linked cases.

While more passengers overall are landing in the islands since the launch of the pre-travel testing program, it’s returning residents who have the higher infection rate.

And medical experts said that could be putting the community at greater risk.

“The returning resident comes back to the community, the home, the family, the people that they work,” said DeWolfe Miller, epidemiologist at the University of Hawaii’s John A. Burns School of Medicine.

The neighbor islands (especially Kauai) are seeing the biggest differences between the percentage of visitors versus returning residents who test positive for the virus after arrival….

In Maui County, it’s almost even in recent months with a slight uptick in COVID-19 cases among visitors recently. On the Big Island, it’s a back and forth with locals upping visitors slightly this month.

Oahu is the only island where visitors are more likely to test positive after arrival. And that trend has held steady since September. It’s also the island with the most tourists.

Tourists make up about two-thirds of all the passengers….

SA: Returning Hawaii residents pose virus risk, study finds

read … Statistics suggest returning residents, not visitors, more likely to bring COVID-19 into Hawaii

100,000 Arrivals This Week

HNN: … The state says about 100,000 people have arrived at Hawaii’s airports in the past week.  Some 15,000 passengers were registered to arrive on Wednesday through the Safe Travels program….

read … Hawaii sees one of its busiest travel days of the pandemic, despite CDC guidance

Kim urges evaluation of testing programs, fewer exemptions for travelers

WHT: … The Big Island is the only county in the state to require a second, post-flight negative COVID test for travelers seeking to avoid quarantine. Kim said the decision to implement the second test was necessary to avoid what he identified as several “loopholes” in the Safe Travels program.

For one thing, Kim said, nearly one-quarter of all travelers to and within the state are exempt from the program entirely, meaning they do not have to get tested at all, which creates a large gap in the state’s ability to gather data on the virus’ spread.

Kim said he strongly urged Ige to remove all exemptions from the Safe Travels program and require all travelers, essential or otherwise, to be tested.

Kim also said that he requested that Ige immediately begin an evaluation of data collected by the Safe Travels program and the Big Island’s post-flight testing program to determine how successful they have truly been at limiting the spread of the virus.

A few hours after Kim’s comments to the Tribune-Herald, the state Department of Defense announced that Safe Travels Hawaii has detected 45 positive COVID-19 cases in the 20,253 tests conducted since its launch Oct. 19, and that Wednesday marked the end of the program’s “data collection phase.” The program now proceeds to its assessment phase, according to the announcement….

TGI: Kauai County Council backs Mayor on COVID

MN: Maui won’t opt out of pre-travel testing program

read … Kim urges evaluation of testing programs, fewer exemptions for travelers

Maui: Six million pounds of food given in pandemic

MN: … Since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March, leaving thousands out of work, the Maui Food Bank and its partner agencies have given out 6 million pounds of food in just nine months, more than twice what they normally distribute in a year….

Last year, the food bank gave out 2.7 million pounds of food, he added….

(MATH: 6m in 9 mos = 8M in year.  8/2.7 = 3 … tripling the amount for free food and the first 3 mos were pre-pandemic)

read … Six million pounds of food given in pandemic

We need more farming, not fields covered with solar panels

SA: … Remember Gov. David Ige’s goal in 2014 that we would double local food production by 2020? With about a month left in 2020, we have advanced some, but lost large farmlands and dairies on Maui, the Big Island, Kauai and Oahu, and probably are still about where we were in 2014, if not behind.

One would hope that the state would double down and push ahead on all fronts. Instead, to provide income for University of Hawaii-West Oahu, it now wants to put the AES West Oahu Solar and Battery Project on 97 acres of precious state-owned, fallow farmland on the Ewa Plain just above the H-1 freeway.

Larry Jeft’s Kelena Farms worked this property for years and found it “very productive.” It also either was part of, or adjacent to, the Golden Triangle, the highest-producing farmlands in Hawaii during sugar times….

read … We need more farming, not fields covered with solar panels

36 Tiny Homes Being Built in Kalaeloa

KITV: … The state-subsidized tiny homes will be rented out by houseless residents for $200-$400 per month.

The "Kauhale," project, spearheaded by Hawaii's Lieutenant Governor Josh Green, aims to attack Hawaii's homeless crisis with a sustainable blueprint. The entire project costs roughly $3 million. (Gold plated at @ $83,333 per unit.  By using locations with pre-existing shower and restroom facilities, cost could be reduced.  We need 3,600 units not 36 units.  And we don’t need to spend $300M to build them.) The state is chipping in $1.5 million, the rest being covered by donations.

Each home was built for roughly $19,500. There's also community center on the property for residents to use restrooms, showers, a kitchen and laundry….

The state-subsidized tiny homes will be rented out by houseless residents for $200-$400 per month….

Senator Kurt Fevella is another proponent of using this model as a blueprint, saying he'd like to see it replicated in Waimanalo, Kahuku and downtown Honolulu….

SA: A new kauhale homeless community in Kalaeloa sees its first tiny home

HNN: Perseverance prevails as construction on tiny home village for homeless resumes

read … 36 Tiny Homes Being Built in Kalaeloa

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